Ethical Considerations for Prosecutors in Intimate Partner Violence Cases

Intimate partner violence cases present unique ethical challenges related to victim privacy and confidentiality, prosecutorial discretion, recantation, and disclosure of evidence. Achieving justice in intimate partner violence cases requires prosecutors to have a firm grasp of their legal obligations as well as their ethical responsibilities throughout each stage of the criminal justice process. This recording addresses ethical considerations in the context of charging decisions, immunity, compulsion of victim testimony, Crawford, and the investigative function of a prosecutor. The presenter uses hypothetical case scenarios to challenge prosecutors to evaluate their decision-making in the context of ethical rules and principles.

This webinar recording should qualify prosecutors for 1 hour of continuing legal education (CLE) credits. Prosecutors are encouraged to contact their state bar association in reference to application requirements and related fees.

Economic Justice for Victims

Economic abuse is one of the many ways that abusers achieve and maintain power and control over their intimate partners. Many such acts are criminal in and of themselves but are frequently overlooked when the focus is on physical abuse. Moreover, economic barriers prevent many victims from securing safety for themselves and their children. This webinar recording explores the ways in which economic insecurity and economic abuse affect victims and will suggest strategies to achieve economic justice in cases involving intimate partner violence, stalking, sexual violence, and human trafficking.

This webinar recording should qualify prosecutors for 1 hour of continuing legal education (CLE) credits. Prosecutors are encouraged to contact their state bar association in reference to application requirements and related fees.

Disarming the Batterer: Intimate Partner Violence and Firearms

Firearms are the most frequently used weapons in intimate partner homicide, eclipsing all other weapons combined. As prosecutors, it is our responsibility to make the most of the available tools at our disposal to disarm violent offenders and increase the safety of victims and our communities. This webinar discusses: the danger posed by firearms in the hands of batterers; firearms prohibitions for domestic violence offenders under federal or state law; recent U.S. Supreme Court decisions interpreting federal firearms prohibitions; the importance of firearms surrender protocols.

This webinar recording should qualify prosecutors for 1 hour of continuing legal education (CLE) credits. Prosecutors are encouraged to contact their state bar association in reference to application requirements and related fees.

Criminal Meets Civil: Coordinating Our Response

Prosecutors know that a coordinated response to intimate partner violence provides maximum support to victims. Prosecutors and attorneys representing victims in civil proceedings are equally dedicated to victim safety, but may not always fully appreciate the value and limitations of each other’s role in the process. This presentation highlights the importance of coordination between prosecutors and victims’ civil attorneys and suggests ways they can work together to identify helpful evidence that will be admissible in the criminal case. The presenter also explores ways in which civil proceedings in family or other civil courts can support the victim while the criminal case is pending.

This webinar recording should qualify prosecutors for 1 hour of continuing legal education (CLE) credits. Prosecutors are encouraged to contact their state bar association in reference to application requirements and related fees.

Context is Everything: Battered Women Charged with Crimes

There are many dilemmas facing police, prosecutors, and allied professionals who deal with domestic violence, especially in cases where battered women have been charged with crimes. Mandatory arrest policies can lead to the arrest of victims exercising their right to self-defense or otherwise acting in response to the dynamics of the violent relationship. This webinar emphasizes the importance of contextual analysis in evaluating criminal responsibility at all stages of the criminal justice process. Such analysis will help to ensure that the dynamics of domestic violence are properly factored into decisions about arrest, charging, plea negotiations, and sentencing, and will enhance the quality of justice for those who have been victims of abuse.

This webinar recording should qualify prosecutors for 1.5 hours of continuing legal education (CLE) credits. Prosecutors are encouraged to contact their state bar association in reference to application requirements and related fees.

Body-Worn Cameras and Gender-Based Violence: Practical Considerations from the Prosecution Perspective

Over the past decade, law enforcement’s use of body-worn cameras (BWCs) has significantly increased. While BWCs can provide helpful evidence in cases involving gender-based violence (GBV), their use may also adversely impact victim safety and privacy. This webinar discusses many of the issues law enforcement, prosecutors, forensic examiners, and other allied professionals must consider when BWCs are used in GBV investigations. The presenter describes the importance of multidisciplinary collaboration – at the local, state, and federal levels – in order to develop effective BWC policies that address victim safety, privacy, and autonomy. The presenter also addresses issues such as deactivation of a BWC at appropriate points during the investigation; privacy and safety considerations; discovery, redaction, and protective orders limiting dissemination; and requests under freedom of information or open records statutes.

This webinar recording should qualify prosecutors for 1 hour of continuing legal education (CLE) credits. Prosecutors are encouraged to contact their state bar association in reference to application requirements and related fees.

Please note: The audio recording had a few technical glitches. There are a few brief gaps where the training paused in order to reconnect. Please excuse these disruptions.

The Prosecutors’ Resource on Forfeiture by Wrongdoing

Forfeiture by wrongdoing is a longstanding exception to a defendant’s Sixth Amendment right to confront the witnesses against him. If a defendant causes a witness to be unavailable for trial through his wrongful acts, with the intention of preventing that witness from testifying, then the introduction of the witness’s prior testimonial statements is not barred by the Confrontation Clause of the Sixth Amendment of the United States Constitution. This resource will review the origins and requirements of forfeiture by wrongdoing, examine its utility in domestic violence cases, outline trial strategies, and provide a checklist for hearings on forfeiture.

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Betraying the Badge: Officer-Involved Domestic Violence

Batterers who wear a badge can misuse their professional training and authority as weapons against their victims. Officers who are victims of intimate partner violence may be reluctant to identify as victims and may face negative professional consequences for reporting, or failing to report, the abuse. This webinar addresses: the complex dynamics of violence when one or both parties are in law enforcement; effective management of simultaneous administrative and criminal proceedings; provision of appropriate services for victims; and the mitigation of consequences for victim-officers who recant, fail to appear, or otherwise decline to participate.

This webinar recording should qualify prosecutors for 1.5 hours of continuing legal education (CLE) credits. Prosecutors are encouraged to contact their state bar association in reference to application requirements and related fees.

#GUILTY: Identifying, Preserving, and Presenting Digital Evidence

Unfortunately, as technology becomes more integral to our lives, offenders increasingly misuse technology to facilitate crimes against women, and as a means to assert power and control in the course of an intimate partner relationship. This webinar demonstrates how cyber investigations can be used to reveal evidence of criminal activity, as well as evidence of the power and control dynamics of an abusive relationship. The presenter discusses theories of admission, rules of evidence, and case law using “real life” examples to demonstrate how to properly authenticate and introduce digital evidence in civil and criminal proceedings.

This webinar recording should qualify prosecutors for 1 hour of continuing legal education (CLE) credits. Prosecutors are encouraged to contact their state bar association in reference to application requirements and related fees.